IT Training: Is It Worth It To Your Boss?
All of you are involved in continuous learning, just to keep up with
the market. But sometimes, it's difficult to get the company to front
the costs. Here is an article that I asked Sandra L. Hamilton to
write for W2Knews, which will give you some ammo to get the company
to pay for your Certification. It was written so you can copy and
paste it and send it to your seniors. Here goes!
"In today?s economy and information technology explosion, the most
important skill set employers seek are technical skills. For the first
time in employment history, a college degree is not the number one
deciding factor when hiring new employees. The technical certifications
you attain and what you know about information processing, networking,
web development, etc., are the key elements to landing the job of your
But what about the skills of the current workforce at any given company?
Many of these employees are loyal, hard-working individuals who are
committed to the goals of their employer.....however, their technical
skills may be somewhat outdated. What to do? Isn?t it better to assist
your loyal workers in acquiring new skills than to let them go and recruit
new technical employees who may not have the same work ethics and values
or may not "fit" in your organization.
Upgrading the skills of your current workforce makes sense on several
different levels. It is a proven way to keep valued employees and save
on the cost of new hires. Also, according to research done by the Meta
Group, employees view "retraining" as one of the most sought-after "perks"
in the workplace. After stock options lose their luster and the memory
of vacations fade, it is the company that provides technical computer
training for their employees that will inspire the strongest loyalty
and increased overall productivity and profit margins.
Think about this: A Win-Win Situation....
$1 spent on corporate IT training can yield a tenfold return on investment
within one year (Merrill Lynch). And, by providing new technical training,
the company wins again by incorporating new technology into the workforce
thereby increasing productivity, employee morale, and improved product
and/or service quality. Conversely, the employees "win" because they
receive new technical skills and abilities that will enhance their value
and marketability in the future. Additionally, their self worth, self
esteem and job security are all reinforced. Retaining and retraining
your best people is the most cost effective way to go.
Whenever an employee leaves, it costs the company nearly 2 times
their salary to hire a replacement once you include salary increases,
advertising, third-party recruiter fees and hiring bonuses paid to
the new workers. (Meta Group). There?s an old adage, "If you think
education is expensive, try ignorance". In the corporate world,
ignorance of new and emerging technologies means you lose the
competitive edge and fall behind. And your competitors are already
providing technical training to their employees as reported by the
Meta Group. 300 percent more companies offered IT training in the
year 2000 compared to the previous decade. And projections for the
next three years are dramatically higher given the momentum of
Perhaps by now we have convinced you that corporate IT training is
beneficial to all parties involved. Great. But, how do we find the
resources to do it? The expense of corporate training may be defrayed
in a number of ways.
One way is through tax credits. The Technology Workforce Coalition (a
non-profit industry organization) has been pushing for a tax credit for
IT training for years, and their efforts have recently borne fruit in
several states such as Arizona, Maryland, and others. Arizona for
instance passed a state tax credit of 100% of the costs per employee
up to a maximum of $1500. This credit goes to the small business owner
who is investing in his workforce to ensure his company will meet the
technological challenges facing us today. We hope that a similar bill
passes in the California Legislature soon.
Another way to defray the retraining costs is to apply to the State
Employment Training Panel (ETP) whereby the California Unemployment
Insurance (which represents employer contributions to the UI fund)
is sponsoring 'upgrading' of employee skills in an effort to keep
California?s economy healthy and prosperous. This program will cover
the costs associated with technical training to employees. One criteria
is that an applicant company must identify at least twenty (20) workers
who need upgrading. And the training must be offered during work hours.
One way to do this creatively is to offer a "lunchtime training" program
whereby employees go to a local training center and are provided a box
lunch along with their two-hour training session. The employee gives up
their lunch break and the employer throws in an extra hour on the clock.
What a concept!!
The "lunchtime training" program will include training in the following
Remember our great country has succeeded because we believe in "lifelong
learning".... and the power of educating everyone to their greatest
potential. Your employees are worth it!
- Troubleshooting and computer repair at the office
- MS Word and Excel 2000
- Email and using the Internet for business research
- Network Installation and Administration Overview
- Web design and development
- Making effective and attention-getting presentations in PowerPoint 2000
Author Sandra L. Hamilton is President & CEO of EdNet Career Institute,
Inc., a Computer Training facility in Warner Center. EdNet is a Microsoft
Technical Education Center as well as an authorized Testing Center for IT
certification exams. She can be reached at [email protected]